Tractor death shows need for seatbelts - coroner
Mon, 18 Oct 2010 7:33p.m.
The death of a retired Masterton farmer earlier this year after he was crushed by a tractor highlights the need for a law change making seat belts mandatary for all earth moving vehicles, says Wellington regional coroner, Ian Smith.
Daniel Bensaude, 73, died on March 16 after he was crushed by a tractor he was driving on a farm on Motukai Road in Masterton.
There was a "reasonable" chance Mr Bensaude would still be alive had he been wearing a seat belt, but the law, as it currently stood, meant the tractor he was driving was not required to have one installed, Mr Smith said.
He went on to say that "all earth moving capable machines should have the compulsory wearing of a seat belt in no less a fashion than is required when driving a motor vehicle on a road".
He stopped short of making an official recommendation for a law change saying such a recommendation would be futile and surely "fall on deaf ears".
Mr Bensaude died while out doing maintenance work on a farm he had leased to his daughter and son-in-law for the past for the past 21 years.
After failing to return home for lunch his son-in-law went looking for him and found him lying on a slope on the hillside below a track.
He then called emergency services who were unable to revive Mr Bensaude.
An occupational safety and health report from the Department of Labour said it was not known why Mr Bensaude crashed his tractor but said it appeared he was thrown from the vehicle as it rolled down the hill.
The Labour Department said all tractors with roll over protective structures -- as was the case with Mr Bensaude's -- should be fitted with seat belts and farmers should use them whenever practicable.
Seat belts acted to hold the operator within the protective structure and could "substantially reduce the risk of injury as a result of a roll over".
Post a Comment
Before commenting, please take the time to read our moderation guide
(Won't be published)
On the June 6, after rugby training, someone hit Stephen Dud...
New Zealanders are today bracing for a polar blast which wil...
New Zealanders are preparing for the worst as an oncoming po...
ACC levies have gone down under this government, but at what...
Copyright © 2013 MediaWorks TV. All Rights Reserved.